Preseason Predictions Thread

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Preseason Predictions Thread

Post by Cheynem » Thu Aug 11, 2011 1:28 pm

Here is my Top 25. I wasn't sure who was still around at some schools, so it probably has some errors. That's why it's a prediction thread.

1. YALE. Yale won ACF Nationals last year and Matt Jackson won DII ICT. All of their major contributors are back, and they all are pretty impressive. This team is nigh-impossible to defeat on music questions with extremely strong humanities/fine arts coverage.

2. ILLINOIS. I took some heat for this in the IRC, but assuming Mike Sorice is back and Ike Jose plays (both of which are admittedly assumptions I don't know are true), this is a team which was a game away from playing in the ACF Nationals title game. Their ICT performance wasn't as solid as years past, but Sorice is typically a fearsome NAQT player.

3. VIRGINIA. The sky's the limit for the Cavaliers, what with wunderkind Matt Bollinger entrenched there, along with newly acquired Evan Adams and frosh Tommy Casalaspi, with their only major loss from last year Will Butler. Luck conspired to foil UVA's runs at ICT and ACF Nats, but assuming strong attendance and someone to pick up science questions, this team is definitely in the mix for a title hunt.

4. PENN. Last year was a pretty disappointing year for Penn. Eric Mukherjee couldn't play the nationals and the team sort of fizzled. Assuming Eric rights the ship, this team instantly becomes a contender, and there are still a number of talented folks either attending or beginning to attend there.

5. CHICAGO. I was really impressed that Chicago was very much alive in the title hunt last year despite the losses of Seth Teitler, Michael Arnold, David Seal, and Adam Perkins. I am under the impression that Selene Koo is done, but also hear rumors that Shantanu Jha is back. Regardless, this team has a Yankees-like efficiency in churning up top lineups. Its DII team took second and it has enough talent to contend.

6. BROWN. The loss of Aaron Rosenberg is a tough one, but I believe this team's ICT lineup is completely intact. Guy Tabachnick is the real deal, and they have a variety of scoring options with a wide variety of knowledge.

7. MICHIGAN: Michigan could easily move up a few slots. Kurtis Droge is a legitimate MVP threat, and this team more or less uses the four specialist models, with people with knowledge in history, fine arts, and science. Will Nediger provides another scoring threat. I have this team at 7 because I'm interested in seeing how the loss of Michael Hausinger affects them and if they can up their ICT game.

8. HARVARD: I think Ted Gioia is back, so he, Dallas Simons, Stephen Liu, and others provide a pretty terrific foundation. This is another team that could end up moving up a few slots before the season is done. They're a tremendous humanities team, and it will be interesting to see how they respond to the loss of Andy Watkins.

9. MINNESOTA: I might be overranking my team, but this is where I put them. Andrew Hart is a very good player and all of our solidly placed DII ICT squad is back. The losses of Rob Carson and Gautam Kandlikar hit us pretty hard, though. I'll let others analyze if this is too high.

10. MARYLAND: The Chris Ray Show rolls on. SteveJon Guth's experience editing CO will surely help him mature into a fine science player (and the graduation of so many science players across the league could mean even a merely good science player can roll in this category). Maryland got kind of squeezed with tough draws at both nationals, but Chris is a gamer and this team always competes.

11. UCSD: I'm sure Auroni Gupta would like to be ranked higher, and again, he might end up leapfrogging some teams. I expect some fun matchups with Berkeley to determine West Coast supremacy this year. Auroni is becoming a legitimate top scoring option (his CO performance was quite impressive), and I admit I don't really know much about his supporting cast.

12. BERKELEY: Jeff Hoppes, assuming he plays Nationals again, is a great, great player. I've heard rumblings about talented players going here. This is a team that could go higher or lower--obviously Jeff won't be playing ICT (or WILL HE?).

13. CARLETON: Carsten Gehring has worked his tail off to make this not only a good NAQT program, but a program invested in playing anywhere. Despite the losses of NAQT wunderkinds Andreas Stoehr and Austin Bell, this team has a lot of talented youngsters, the underrated Frank Firke, and Charlie Rosenthal. I think it will make some noise at ICT (where it beat Yale last year).

14. RICE: Henry Gorman is a talented player and this team does well when it plays.

15. MIT: I hope MIT plays more stuff. Neil Gurram knows things and there are enough people who know things at MIT sort of languishing there, waiting to be tapped. I also hear Miriam Nussbaum is coming here.

16. OHIO STATE: I like this team. Jacob Durst returns in a graduate capacity and its young core of Jarret Greene and Jasper Lee have really worked hard to get this team very involved.

17. RPI: I think Aaron Cohen tends to get underrated in player poll discussions. He's a deadly sharpshooter type player whom I would like to see come to ACF Nationals. This team also got kind of squeezed in its ICT seeding, I thought.

18. NORTHWESTERN: Assuming Kevin Malis plays, this team features a great youngster off the bat, joining a team which seemed to move up a few notches with the addition of Dan Donohue.

19. STANFORD: I hear this team has gotten some nice youngsters and Joey Montoya is there too. Let's hope everyone plays.

20. GEORGIA TECH: Will Butler is now here and maybe he can get this team really invested.

21. UCLA: I'm not sure who's still here aside from Ray Luo and Mik Larsen, but I had to throw Mik some rankings love after stomping his way through CO. Well done, Mik. Now get out of here, you maniac.

22. VCU: Needless to say, this team takes a hit with the loss of Evan Adams. I think the core here though still has a lot of knowledge and the coaching of Matt Weiner is always key. They may surprise, I'm not sure.

23. FLORIDA: I've heard Aaron Kashtan is gone. That said, the former C&C Music Factory duo of Dallin Kelson and Ethan Hewett certainly know things.

24. ALABAMA: While not a trendy pick among most mainstream quizbowlers, I think this team did okay at ICT. It retains all of its players.

25. WUSTL: Charles Hang gets his points. If he actually plays with Gordon Arsenoff at ICT, this team could actually make a run at a decent bracket.

(I wasn't sure who was back for Columbia)
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Re: Preseason Predictions Thread

Post by Skepticism and Animal Feed » Thu Aug 11, 2011 3:16 pm

I still think that Doug Yetman playing solo is a top 25 team. But I guess he hasn't actually played anything in a long time, and possibly he's either quit quizbowl or graduated.
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Re: Preseason Predictions Thread

Post by Nick » Thu Aug 11, 2011 3:27 pm

If graham moyer plays for harvard, I think they move up.

Same goes for MIT if the two (i think) state college alums play there.
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Re: Preseason Predictions Thread

Post by 1992 in spaceflight » Thu Aug 11, 2011 3:55 pm

I think Dees coming back to Columbia (as a student-I don't think he took classes last year) could result in Mizzou moving up into the top 25.
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Re: Preseason Predictions Thread

Post by DumbJaques » Thu Aug 11, 2011 4:27 pm

Random thoughts on some of Mike's stuff:

It'll be interesting to see how much the unique nature of last year's ACF Nationals really impacted Yale's dominance - it definitely insulated some of their weaknesses (science, teams who are very good but not elite across more categories than they are) and highlighted some of their strengths (deep, deep patches of knowledge in some areas in particular). I'll predict that Yale more than any other top team will vary depending on question set this year, but obviously they're returning everyone and will be scary.

UVA will be very tough next year and are probably my preseason number 1. Evan and Matt are among the best active players and Tommy Casalaspi is no joke - moreover, they're going to actually have a contributor to put in that fourth seat, which has been a big issue for UVA in the past. Yeah, they lack a science player, but all three of those guys can fraud some stuff. I think people are overestimating the impact that not having a dominant science player will have - see Yale 2011, Maryland 2008, and a number of other contending teams.

Penn is very dangerous as Eric has completely rededicated himself and is no longer preoccupied with slicing up unsuspecting Philadelphians. Their supporting lineup will be the big X factor - Dominic is out, freshman Saajid Moyen is in, and no one else on the Penn team has stepped up yet. We'll see if that changes.

If Shantanu is back Chicago is a title contender and probably a favorite, but I'm not sure where those rumors are coming from. If neither he nor Selene is around next year I'd be really, really surprised if they finished in the top 5, but as Mike says, they always seem to pull it off.

Is Dan Klein still at Brown? Regardless, I think Mike is overestimating the impact losing Aaron Rosenberg will have on this team. That dude is the real deal, and is a generalist who can also get several categories against most teams. I of course expect Brown to be very good, but I'd be surprised if they could lose their top scorer through all three phases of last year's Nationals and still be in the top group of a very, very competitive field.

Harvard is comically under-ranked here, as they can plug in either SC alum immediately and have the talent to beat absolutely anyone in this field. They're sort of undergoing a transition from specialization to generalization, since they no longer have a science guy and will be adding at least one solid generalist to their starting lineup. Personally I think that'll pay off for them, and would be utterly surprised if they finished this low at the end of the year.

Mike, what's Minnesota's lineup next year aside from Andrew?

The question with Maryland will revolve around what kind of contributions we can get from our third and fourth chairs - that just wasn't any kind of consistent last year. I'll go ahead and predict that incoming freshman Arun Chonai turns a few heads this year, and transfer Dan Puma should add some much-needed depth. I actually think that our additions and developing underclassmen give Maryland B the potential to be a fringe top 25 team as well, but that will depend a lot on how much work people put in.

I was under the impression that Jeff wasn't playing next year, but perhaps the IRC is yet again the principal arbiter of reality. If he is and those other guys are back, that's a good team.

If Rice brings back their full lineup and sustains reasonably attendance, they're a very solid team that could shoot up the rankings and surprise a lot of people.

MIT, as always, has all the talent and potential in the world but it's anyone's guess what the heck is going on there. This team could show up and be very, very tough - or it could not show up at all.
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Re: Preseason Predictions Thread

Post by Cheynem » Thu Aug 11, 2011 4:43 pm

I was ranking Harvard on the low end mainly because I didn't take into account incoming freshmen in many cases. I was probably overestimating Brown as well (I thought Dan Klein was still there also).

Minnesota's best possible lineup at this point would probably be Andrew, me, Gaurav Kandlikar, and Bernadette. We have a lot of young players.
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Re: Preseason Predictions Thread

Post by Important Bird Area » Thu Aug 11, 2011 5:00 pm

I'm not playing next year; nevertheless, Berkeley deserves a spot on this list. I'm expecting our freshmen to make an immediate impact.
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Re: Preseason Predictions Thread

Post by Skepticism and Animal Feed » Thu Aug 11, 2011 5:20 pm

Cheynem wrote:I was ranking Harvard on the low end mainly because I didn't take into account incoming freshmen in many cases. I was probably overestimating Brown as well (I thought Dan Klein was still there also).
I didn't mean to raise this point, but now that Chris Ray has let the "Harvard gets no respect from Mike Cheyne" cat out of the bag, I'll point out some of the reasons I think that your rating is, as Chris put it, comic: UVA lost its science player and went to #2 on your ranking. Harvard lost its science player and dropped to #8. A bunch of bad southern teams got into the top 25 on your ranking because they did well at ICT (despite losing players). Meanwhile, the two-time ICT champions of the world get knocked down.
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Re: Preseason Predictions Thread

Post by Cheynem » Thu Aug 11, 2011 5:25 pm

UVA lost its science player and are getting at least two super-talented players. That's why they moved up to #3 (not #2). I admit I ranked Harvard low, possibly because I wasn't sure who they were getting in its incoming freshmen class. Also, I think the loss of Andy is a big one--his ICT-Fu was a major reason Harvard won two titles.

I'm not sure who you're referring to among the "bad Southern teams." As far as I know, none of the teams lost key contributors.
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Re: Preseason Predictions Thread

Post by The King's Flight to the Scots » Thu Aug 11, 2011 5:26 pm

Skepticism and Animal Feed wrote:
Cheynem wrote:I was ranking Harvard on the low end mainly because I didn't take into account incoming freshmen in many cases. I was probably overestimating Brown as well (I thought Dan Klein was still there also).
I didn't mean to raise this point, but now that Chris Ray has let the "Harvard gets no respect from Mike Cheyne" cat out of the bag, I'll point out some of the reasons I think that your rating is, as Chris put it, comic: UVA lost its science player and went to #2 on your ranking. Harvard lost its science player and dropped to #8. A bunch of bad southern teams got into the top 25 on your ranking because they did well at ICT (despite losing players). Meanwhile, the two-time ICT champions of the world get knocked down.
This is kind of a strange slant on the situation.
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Re: Preseason Predictions Thread

Post by Magister Ludi » Thu Aug 11, 2011 6:32 pm

Skepticism and Animal Feed wrote:
Cheynem wrote:I was ranking Harvard on the low end mainly because I didn't take into account incoming freshmen in many cases. I was probably overestimating Brown as well (I thought Dan Klein was still there also).
I didn't mean to raise this point, but now that Chris Ray has let the "Harvard gets no respect from Mike Cheyne" cat out of the bag, I'll point out some of the reasons I think that your rating is, as Chris put it, comic: UVA lost its science player and went to #2 on your ranking. Harvard lost its science player and dropped to #8. A bunch of bad southern teams got into the top 25 on your ranking because they did well at ICT (despite losing players). Meanwhile, the two-time ICT champions of the world get knocked down.
Yeah at this point I just take amusement in Mike Cheyne chronically under-ranking Harvard teams. I'm very tempted to get a master's degree at Penn and see what logic he can devise to rank that team low. ("Well they get Ted but Ithey lose Sid so I've got to rank them 9th.")

Also, I think it's bizarre that people put so much credence in ACF Nats stats in rankings. Because there was such a negative reaction tot he tournament writing trends have moved in the opposite direction, which means we should really put more credence in ICT (at which Dallas had the third most powers) or CO stats to show us who will perform well at high level tournaments. In fact, I think we should basically ignore the stats from ACF when making predictions for next year because with Jonathan at the helm of ACF I imagine it will look significantly different. And at the risk of tooting my own horn too much, I am amused that even though I out-scored and out-powered both Matt Jackson and Sorice by a meaningful margin at CO apparently the sheer presence of those two players guarantees Yale and Illinois first and second place on this poll, while Harvard's ability to field four legitimate players led by Dallas and myself is meaningless and can't even land us in the top seven.

Also, Maryland is way under-ranked and Chicago is much too high unless both Shantanu and Selene are going to play.

I think I'll print out a list of this "Top 25" and hand it out to freshman as motivation.
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Re: Preseason Predictions Thread

Post by Auroni » Thu Aug 11, 2011 6:38 pm

I am amused that even though I out-scored and out-powered both Matt Jackson and Sorice by a meaningful margin at CO apparently the sheer presence of those two players guarantees Yale and Illinois first and second place on this poll
No, that is not what makes those teams first and second at all.
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Re: Preseason Predictions Thread

Post by Cheynem » Thu Aug 11, 2011 6:49 pm

While I am delighted to offer motivational fuel for Harvard, I am not sure where my apparent desire to under-rank Harvard teams comes from. In last year's rankings, the only other year I have ranked Harvard, I ranked them sixth. As it turned out, it was too low, and I also was unsure if Ted was playing that season.

I admit i probably ranked Harvard too low right now. I was assuming Shantanu was going to play for Chicago. While you can probably quibble about Harvard's relation to Illinois (I think Ike complements Mike Sorice really well), I question the Yale comment. I didn't rank Yale first purely because of Matt Jackson. The team also brings back Kevin Koai and John Lawrence, who are fearsome within their categories, played well at CO, and played well at Nationals.

I think the central issue here is that a number of these teams are very close in strength, in my opinion. I have to base stuff off of both ICT (which according to Bruce, I did too much) and ACF Nationals from last year, even though it may very well not resemble it this year (although I think people are overstating the argument as to how different this year's Nats will turn out to be).

If William Horton needs some rage-filled motivation, then have at it, but I assure you I wasn't trying to intentionally slight Harvard.
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Re: Preseason Predictions Thread

Post by AKKOLADE » Thu Aug 11, 2011 6:53 pm

Magister Ludi wrote:I think I'll print out a list of this "Top 25" and hand it out to freshman as motivation.
LADUE?!?>!?!
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Re: Preseason Predictions Thread

Post by Rufous-capped Thornbill » Thu Aug 11, 2011 7:13 pm

Who was it that had a list of what teams are getting what new players? George Berry?
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Re: Preseason Predictions Thread

Post by The Ununtiable Twine » Thu Aug 11, 2011 8:48 pm

Skepticism and Animal Feed wrote:
Cheynem wrote:I was ranking Harvard on the low end mainly because I didn't take into account incoming freshmen in many cases. I was probably overestimating Brown as well (I thought Dan Klein was still there also).
I didn't mean to raise this point, but now that Chris Ray has let the "Harvard gets no respect from Mike Cheyne" cat out of the bag, I'll point out some of the reasons I think that your rating is, as Chris put it, comic: UVA lost its science player and went to #2 on your ranking. Harvard lost its science player and dropped to #8. A bunch of bad southern teams got into the top 25 on your ranking because they did well at ICT (despite losing players). Meanwhile, the two-time ICT champions of the world get knocked down.
For what it's worth, we did pick up Mark Morris, which will solidify our position as one of the stronger science teams in due time (and help out with the chem/bio immediately) as well as give us a little more talent and canon coverage. We were playing shorthanded for most of last year and had a few chemistry and effort problems that seem to have been more or less resolved from what I can tell. My teammates tend to be better at NAQT but I think we should be a top 15 or so team by the end of the year on both formats if we stay dedicated. There are worse teams out there, Bruce.

Also, I think Harvard is underrated at 8, I'd personally rank them around 5 with an outside chance to 3-peat at ICT if they can find a way to be average on nationals-level science. With that being said, my top 5 are Yale, UVA, Penn, Illinois, and Harvard, with Brown and Chicago close behind. Of course all of this depends on lineups for each team but it's just a preseason poll anyway.
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Re: Preseason Predictions Thread

Post by Sen. Estes Kefauver (D-TN) » Thu Aug 11, 2011 8:58 pm

Jesus people, you're as bad as the high schoolers with the rankings threads.
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Re: Preseason Predictions Thread

Post by cvdwightw » Thu Aug 11, 2011 9:06 pm

Magister Ludi wrote:I think I'll print out a list of this "Top 25" and hand it out to freshman as motivation.
Your team has multiple reportedly dedicated incoming freshmen.

In the long run, I think that's sort of more important than being ranked n spots too low on Mike Cheyne's Preseason Top 25.
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Re: Preseason Predictions Thread

Post by Magister Ludi » Thu Aug 11, 2011 10:43 pm

cvdwightw wrote:
Magister Ludi wrote:I think I'll print out a list of this "Top 25" and hand it out to freshman as motivation.
Your team has multiple reportedly dedicated incoming freshmen.

In the long run, I think that's sort of more important than being ranked n spots too low on Mike Cheyne's Preseason Top 25.
That was obviously a typo.
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Re: Preseason Predictions Thread

Post by Auks Ran Ova » Thu Aug 11, 2011 10:51 pm

Magister Ludi wrote:
cvdwightw wrote:
Magister Ludi wrote:I think I'll print out a list of this "Top 25" and hand it out to freshman as motivation.
Your team has multiple reportedly dedicated incoming freshmen.

In the long run, I think that's sort of more important than being ranked n spots too low on Mike Cheyne's Preseason Top 25.
That was obviously a typo.
I don't think that's his point!
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Re: Preseason Predictions Thread

Post by Sir Thopas » Thu Aug 11, 2011 11:58 pm

Cheynem wrote:I was ranking Harvard on the low end mainly because I didn't take into account incoming freshmen in many cases. I was probably overestimating Brown as well (I thought Dan Klein was still there also).
Dan will still be there, although the loss of Aaron will certainly hit us hard.
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Re: Preseason Predictions Thread

Post by AlphaQuizBowler » Fri Aug 12, 2011 12:31 am

Cheynem wrote: If William Horton needs some rage-filled motivation, then have at it, but I assure you I wasn't trying to intentionally slight Harvard.
Fred wrote: LADUE?!?>!?!
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Re: Preseason Predictions Thread

Post by Magister Ludi » Fri Aug 12, 2011 1:46 am

Heres my take on the top teams based on what I've seen playing these teams a few times.

Tier One:

(1) UVA, (2) Yale, (3) Harvard. Next year will be a battle of the humanities. I think UVA has the slight edge because Matt Bollinger is the best player on a contending team and they're the best history team. If they get even 15 ppg out of a fourth that would make them even tougher. People make a lot of Yale's music advantage but just as important is the fact Matt Jackson is one of the few elite religion players and thats a category very few teams are competent in. With two top tier specialists and one of the game's best generalists they're obviously dangerous, but frankly Yale was helped significantly by the aberrant difficulty level of last year's ACF which negated a lot of teams relying on real knowledge in areas outside of the arts so this year will be the test to see if they are the real deal. A lot of Harvard's success depends on how much Dallas improves at history and which of our incoming freshmen step up to the plate as our fourth player but right now I think we can hold our own against the teams below us.

Tier Two:

(4) Illinois: Mike and Ike are obviously a good combination but even if those two play I am unconvinced they are a top three team. Because people only seem to care about the aberrant results of ACF they seem to forget that VCU beat Illinois for fourth place at ICT last year. Sorice can be as good as any player but my sense is that he isn't as focused on quizbowl at this point in his life and with so many teams driven to improve I feel unsure about even putting them this high.

(5) Brown: Despite what Mike Cheyne's infallible player poll suggests Aaron was the most important player for Brown at mACF tournaments. Their issue is that they get hammered in literature when they play strong literature teams, four out of five times we played Brown last year we answered all the literature tossups in the packet. But having played them, Aaron was the critical player in letting them make up the difference with his expertise on arts, myth, and engineering questions. At NAQT weaknesses in arts and literature don't show as much and in fact they are probably the front-runners at ICT this year, but in mACF tournament there will be incredible pressure on Ben, Guy, (and Justin if he's playing) to convert history and RMP questions. So I think they have the ability to win a lot of games

(6) Penn: The problem for Eric is that his comparative advantage in science is not very meaningful in the current quizbowl landscape. He would be able to answer all of the science questions against the top teams if he were half as good at science. While Eric is far and away the best active player in quizbowl, the rub is his fate hinges upon competing on humanities questions against super-charged humanities teams.

Tier Three:

(7) UMD: Having even a good science player in Steve-Jon can be an invaluable asset in all games not against Penn, so I wouldn't be surprised to see Chris Ray leading UMD to many wins against top teams. It's fashionable to underrate Chris's teams but when he gets hot he can legitimately beat anyone from Weiner to Magin. Editing CO science says Steve-Jon is serious about improving even more and I think the supporting cast of Arun and Dan Puma has some potential, so I'll make the perhaps bold pick of putting them above Michigan and think they have a good chance of cracking the top five or higher if nationals breaks their way.

(8) Chicago: I'm not sure why people think Selene isn't playing and Shantanu will play when I thought it was the other way around, but if both play they are a top tier team. If only Selene plays they'll finish somewhere in the middle.

(9) Michigan: I haven't played them enough to accurately rank them, but from the few times I've played them they seem to have a bunch of solid players who always play well but rarely play great. Once again, I think their results at ICT are much closer to the truth than ACF when they benefited from having great generalists in a tournament that penalized real knowledge. My observation playing Kurtis is that he gets massive amounts of questions the line before the giveaway, so if you let a question get to that point you are doomed, but his low power numbers at both CO and VCU Open make me dubious that he will be able to lead them past the teams above them on this list. Maybe they're better but both Libo or Bryan had mediocre COs and losing Hausinger can't help them.
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Re: Preseason Predictions Thread

Post by ThisIsMyUsername » Fri Aug 12, 2011 5:55 am

It seems to me that these polls often get thrown off by assuming that all of the returning players are going to be playing at more-or-less the same skill level that they were at the previous Nationals.

In the 2009-2010 season, I don't think most people were expecting a Ted-less Harvard to pull a national title, because people didn't realize how much better Dallas and Andy were going to get (good enough to make top bracket at ACF Nationals 2010 just playing as pair!). In the 2010-2011 season, Yale and UVA were both seriously underrated. No amount of advantageous writing trends would have put Yale even in the upper half of the top bracket had not Matt Jackson and myself (the former, in particular) improved beyond general expectations over the course of the year (the polls didn't even put us in the top bracket; but we made top bracket at ICT even without Matt!). Same story with UVA: Matt Bollinger improved enough to make top bracket, even Will-less.

I think the top tier is still probably going to be (in some order): Harvard, Illinois, UVA, and Yale. But if you told me that either Michigan or UCSD is going to improve enough to unseat one of these four, I would absolutely believe you (I don't see Brown doing as well, with Aaron gone and Guy taking a semester off; I have no sense of whether Eric is close to plateauing or is still rapidly improving, so Penn could always break into this top four too, I suppose). I don't think we have any good way of predicting in what order these top four will finish: unless Harvard, UVA, or Yale somehow sculpts a science specialist out of an incoming freshman or someone hiding in the wings, I think the determining factor will be how much the current players strategically improve. Illinois obviously has the science advantage. Sorice is going to be formidable as always, but has admitted himself that he has plateaued at his high level. The onus is then on Ike, I think, to see if he can bridge the humanities gap for his team. The remaining three seem to be in the same situation as each other: very strong humanities and no dedicated scientist. I think the two questions that will matter most are: How will the literature and classics specialists (since these are probably the two hardest fought categories among these teams) edge each other out? And which generalist will improve enough at science to have competitive advantage over the other non-scientist generalists?

And if Shantanu awakes from his centuries of stony sleep to slouch towards either nationals, anything could happen...
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Re: Preseason Predictions Thread

Post by Sima Guang Hater » Fri Aug 12, 2011 8:54 am

Im not going to dispute Penn's ranking too heavily, but lest you all forget that Penn has always been science, science, and more science in a supercharged humanities field, and we've managed to get more then 4 tossups against most teams.
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Re: Preseason Predictions Thread

Post by Cheynem » Fri Aug 12, 2011 9:15 am

Ted's tiers make a lot of sense (again, I admit I underranked Harvard). I agree with him on Brown--I think the loss of Aaron will be very costly for ACF, but the team is well equipped to make an ICT run, so that's one of the reasons why I had them so high (probably too high). Ted identified, with the exception of Maryland, which I probably underranked, basically the same eight contenders I did, as I think it remains to be seen where Minnesota and UCSD fall in among the contenders (and I did probably rank Minnesota too high).

The biggest question in my mind is something what John alludes to: Who is going to get better and who is going to be able to play? A number of key contributors on various teams are in graduate/law school; what impact will that have on their performance and national appearances (history indicates less on the former, more on the latter)? I also will again stress that these rankings were designed to generate discussion and not to slight teams. I apologize again to people who I felt I was snubbing their team.
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Re: Preseason Predictions Thread

Post by mhayes » Fri Aug 12, 2011 10:01 am

Skepticism and Animal Feed wrote:
Cheynem wrote:I was ranking Harvard on the low end mainly because I didn't take into account incoming freshmen in many cases. I was probably overestimating Brown as well (I thought Dan Klein was still there also).
A bunch of bad southern teams got into the top 25 on your ranking because they did well at ICT (despite losing players).
I don't think any team on that list would qualify as "bad".
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Re: Preseason Predictions Thread

Post by theMoMA » Fri Aug 12, 2011 2:04 pm

To me, there are currently eleven teams that can put up elite stats and win regular season tournaments and also contend for the top brackets at Nationals and ICT. In the east, we have, in no particular order: Brown, Penn, Yale, Harvard, Virginia, and Maryland. In the Midwest: Chicago, Illinois, Michigan, and Minnesota. In the everywhere else division, UCSD. Barring unexpected player movement or development, these teams seem a cut ahead.

Chicago, Illinois, and Penn will be very dependent on potentially inactive players playing, so they could drop based on lineup.
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Re: Preseason Predictions Thread

Post by marnold » Sat Aug 13, 2011 3:53 pm

Cheynem wrote:(I wasn't sure who was back for Columbia)
Assuming this is my Columbia, I know Chris Horng graduated and I think Dan did too. I might play a bit more than I did last year depending how school/job stuff shakes out. For the nationals tournaments, I'm going to make Rafael play even if I have to kidnap him. The idea that that would move us any higher than "also receiving votes" on one of these lists seems dubious.
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Re: Preseason Predictions Thread

Post by grapesmoker » Mon Aug 15, 2011 11:21 am

Good teams will continue being good. This is the only reliable forecast in quizbowl. The top bracket at next year's nationals will look a lot like the top bracket at this year's.
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